German Verb Conjugation of Sprechen (To Speak)

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The German verb sprechen means to speak or to talk. It is an irregular (strong) verb and a stem-changing verb. Notice the change from e to i in the du and er/sie/es present tense forms. The past participle is gesprochen.

  • Principal Parts: sprechen (spricht) sprach gesprochen
  • Imperative (Commands): (du) Sprich! | (ihr) Sprecht! | Sprechen Sie!

Sprechen - Present Tense - Präsens

Deutsch English
ich spreche I speak/am speaking
du sprichst you speak/are speaking
er spricht
sie spricht
es spricht
he speaks/is speaking
she speaks/is speaking
it speaks/is speaking
wir sprechen we speak/are speaking
ihr sprecht you (guys) speak/
are speaking
sie sprechen they speak/are speaking
Sie sprechen you speak/are speaking

  Sprechen Sie Deutsch?
  Do you speak German?
  Er spricht sehr schnell.
  He talks very fast.

Sprechen - Simple Past Tense - Imperfekt

Deutsch English
ich sprach I spoke
du sprachst you spoke
er sprach
sie sprach
es sprach
he spoke
she spoke
it spoke
wir sprachen we spoke
ihr spracht you (guys) spoke
sie sprachen they spoke
Sie sprachen you spoke

Sprechen - Compound Past Tense (Present Perfect) - Perfekt

Deutsch English
ich habe gesprochen I spoke/have spoken
du hast gesprochen you spoke/have spoken
er hat gesprochen
sie hat gesprochen
es hat gesprochen
he spoke/has spoken
she spoke/has spoken
it spoke/has spoken
wir haben gesprochen we spoke/have spoken
ihr habt gesprochen you (guys) spoke
have spoken
sie haben gesprochen they spoke/have spoken
Sie haben gesprochen you spoke/have spoken

Sprechen - Past Perfect Tense - Plusquamperfekt

Deutsch English
ich hatte gesprochen I had spoken
du hattest gesprochen you had spoken
er hatte gesprochen
sie hatte gesprochen
es hatte gesprochen
he had spoken
she had spoken
it had spoken
wir hatten gesprochen we had spoken
ihr hattet gesprochen you (guys) had spoken
sie hatten gesprochen they had spoken
Sie hatten gesprochen you had spoken

Sprechen - Future Tense - Futur

The future tense is used much less in German than in English. Very often the present tense is used with an adverb instead, as with the present progressive in English: Er ruft morgen an. = He's going to call tomorrow.

Deutsch English
ich werde sprechen I will speak
du wirst sprechen you will speak
er wird sprechen
sie wird sprechen
es wird sprechen
he will speak
she will speak
it will speak
wir werden sprechen we will speak
ihr werdet sprechen you (guys) will speak
sie werden sprechen they will speak
Sie werden sprechen you will speak

Sprechen - Future Perfect Tense - Futur II

Deutsch English
ich werde gesprochen haben I will have spoken
du wirst gesprochen haben you will have spoken
er wird gesprochen haben
sie wird gesprochen haben
es wird gesprochen haben
he will have spoken
she will have spoken
it will have spoken
wir werden gesprochen haben we will have spoken
ihr werdet gesprochen haben you (guys) will have spoken
sie werden gesprochen haben they will have spoken
Sie werden gesprochen haben you will have spoken

Sprechen - Commands - Imperativ

There are three command (imperative) forms, one for each "you" word. In addition, the "let's" form is used with wir.

Deutsch English
(du) sprich! speak
(ihr) sprecht! speak
sprechen Sie! speak
sprechen wir! let's speak

Sprechen - Subjunctive I - Konjunktiv I

The subjunctive is a mood, not a tense. The Subjunctive I (Konjunktiv I) is based on the infinitive form of the verb. It is most often used to express indirect quotation (indirekte Rede). Rare in conversational use, the Subjunctive I is often seen in newspapers, usually in the third person (er spreche, he is said to speak).

*NOTE: Because the Subjunctive I (Konjunktiv I) of "sprechen" in the first person (ich) is identical to the indicative (normal) form, the Subjunctive II is sometimes substituted.

Deutsch English
ich spreche (würde sprechen)* I speak
du sprechest you speak
er spreche
sie spreche
es spreche
he speaks
she speaks
it speaks
wir sprechen we speak
ihr sprechet you (guys) speak
sie sprechen they speak
Sie sprechen you speak

Sprechen - Subjunctive II - Konjunktiv II

The Subjunctive II (Konjunktiv II) expresses wishful thinking, contrary-to-reality situations and is used to express politeness. The Subjunctive II is based on the simple past tense (Imperfektsprach), adding an umlaut + e: spräche.

Since the subjunctive is a mood and not a tense, it can be used in various tenses. Below are examples that illustrate how sprechen forms the subjunctive in past or future time. In such cases, the subjunctive forms of haben or werden are combined with sprechen.

Deutsch English
ich spräche I would speak
du sprächest you would speak
er spräche
sie spräche
es spräche
he would speak
she would speak
it would speak
wir sprächen we would speak
ihr sprächet you (guys) would speak
sie sprächen they would speak
Sie sprächen you would speak
Deutsch English
er habe gesprochen he is said to have spoken
ich hätte gesprochen I would have spoken
sie hätten gesprochen they would have spoken
Deutsch English
er werde gesprochen haben he will have spoken
ich würde sprechen I would speak
du würdest gesprochen haben you would have spoken
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Your Citation
Flippo, Hyde. "German Verb Conjugation of Sprechen (To Speak)." ThoughtCo, Apr. 5, 2023, Flippo, Hyde. (2023, April 5). German Verb Conjugation of Sprechen (To Speak). Retrieved from Flippo, Hyde. "German Verb Conjugation of Sprechen (To Speak)." ThoughtCo. (accessed May 29, 2023).